Thursday, April 08, 2010

Man arrested after 'shoe bomb' incident

A man has been detained after allegedly trying to set fire to his shoes on a US flight. The man was subdued on United Airlines flight 663 from Washington Reagan airport to Denver. While the presence of explosives was not immediately confirmed, reports refer to the incident as a "shoe bomb attempt". An ABC report identified the suspect as a Qatari diplomat stationed at the country's Washington embassy. Meanwhile a source confirmed to Fox News that the suspect is Mohammed al Modadi, a diplomat in the Qatar embassy in Washington. Fox also suggests the man may have tried to light his shoes or something else in an attempt to cover up another smell. A US security official said, "it may have been a massive misunderstanding" and the diplomat's statement may have been a "sarcastic" comment when he was confronted by two air marshals who had been told by flight attendants that smoke was coming from the lavatory. The BBC later conveyed unconfirmed reports that the man may have tried to have a cigarette.

North American Aerospace Defense Command [NORAD] scrambled two F-16s to intercept the United Flight at approximately 20:45 ET as the jet was en route to Denver, Colorado, according to a NORAD statement. Federal authorities say a disturbance aboard a United Airlines flight from Washington, D.C., to Denver, Colorado, Wednesday night occurred when a passenger apparently tried to set a shoe on fire. Law enforcement officials met the plane on the ground in Denver and there were no reports of injuries. "The situation is under control. The flight is on the ground," a federal law enforcement official said. The Boeing 757, with 157 passengers and 6 crew members on board, had been secured authorities said [BBC / CNN].

tvnewswatch, Beijing, China

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